Original Concept by Breanna Toutloff, co written by Breanna Toutloff
She scratched fervently and clawed painfully at the old wooden wall, trying desperately to find any way to break through. Her once beautiful face was stiff from the blood and tears that stained it. Her eye swollen shut from the blow she had received. She screamed as loudly as she could, it was mixed with fear and desperation. The festering wound on her leg was steadily getting worse, she feared an infection was rotting away the flesh that surrounded it. Her manicured fingernails we ripped open and broken, bleeding, from scratching at the aging wood, trying to escape and find the freedom that she so desperately craved. The stench from the piss and vomit swallowed her and it was all she could smell. She feared the only other person with her wasn’t even alive anymore. The stranger stopped moving hours ago and she didn’t know if he slept or was decomposing right next to her. Her throat hoarse from the cries and constant screaming. She wanted to give up, no one could hear here but her fight or flight told her she needed to escape before he came back, whoever he was. This monster that had taken her from her perfect life. She hadn’t even seen his face, he kept it hidden behind a grotesque filthy mask. He never spoke but his breathing was heavy as he struggled to tie her down. She prayed he wouldn’t rape her and take away her innocence but why else would he have left her alive? She couldn’t give up, she had to keep trying.
“Somebody! Pleeeaasseee help me!” she screamed, not expecting anyone to respond.
Her fingers were in so much pain and she felt such insurmountable defeat at her situation she collapsed to her knees “damn it” she cursed softly. Being on her knees hurt too because of her wound but she didn’t care. Everything hurt and even sitting this room was filthy so what did it matter if she got anything in it from the floor. She tried to push away the defeat that threatened to sink in. If she gave up that was truly it and she needed to get out of here, she needed to get back to the friends and family that so deeply loved her. She knew they had to be going crazy with worry and just that had her upset. Even with what she was going through she didn’t want them going through the pain of not knowing where their loved one was.
She couldn’t imagine what this was doing to her mothers anxiety. She had always been so incredibly easy to stress out and with her being missing god knows how long already her mother must be bed ridden with it. She knew in kidnapping situations, especially ones this miserable victims often didn’t realize how much time they had been gone so she knew better than to trust what she thought since she had no way of telling what the actual day or time was.
Though the air was putrid she took deep breaths in and out to calm herself. “You’re not going to loose control, you’re going to make it out of this.” she said, trying to comfort herself so she wouldn’t just let herself slip into depression and acceptance of her fate. She made herself stand again then began to beat on the door “HELP ME!!!” she screamed as loud as her aching lungs would allow.
Her eyes fluttered open, blurred and not focusing. She didn’t know where she was, couldn’t think straight. Slowly, the memories and magnitude of her situation seeped into her mind, poisoning every thought that could have been. She hadn’t realized she fell asleep and cursed herself for giving up, even just for those few moments. She looked around the room and froze. The man who laid next to her was gone, missing. She tried to focus her eyes to see if he had moved and noticed a sudden shift in the corner.
“H-hello?” she spoke out softly. She didn’t know if she was afraid for herself or for him. He moved slightly, enough to see her and then he looked away without a word.
“Please, we have to get out of here, you can’t just give up.”
She felt faint suddenly and lost her ground. She noticed she was sweating and cursed. The infection in her leg must be causing a fever. She knew she didn’t have long before it would take her over completely. She grew angry suddenly and screamed as loud as she could. It burned her throat so badly she let out a sob and hung her head.
“It can’t end like this, we have to get free, we must.”
Her words weren’t directed at the quivering stranger but spoken into nothingness. She heard soft shuffling and turned to see the man slowly standing and walking towards her. If she wasn’t on the verge of death she may even find him attractive. He knelt by her side, face filthy, streaked with dust and the lines of his own desperate sorrow.
“How can we possibly escape? There is only one door and the top is too high for us to climb out. He could come at any moment and steal us away, just like that without a fucking care. This monstrous being who only craves annihilation. The only option we have is to fight him when he comes but by the look of you, you’re not doing so well. I have no weapons to defend myself and you’ve seen how ruthless he is. He killed my wife right in front of me without a hesitation. He swung down on her with all of his force and I watched the horror on her face turn to torment. She was practically chopped in half in my arms and he said nothing, did nothing but steal me away. For what I can’t imagine. I feel there is no hope, I’ve seen his rage and do not have it in me to fight back.”
“If you do not fight back then you are a coward. You can’t possibly just give in to him to do with you as he pleases. If you are that helpless then your wife is better off without you.”
She knew her words stung and immediately questioned her sanity to say such a thing but she was so angry that she no longer gave a fuck. She knew she was dying and still she would fight until her last breath.
“I tried getting out you know.” He said after awhile. “The wood is a lot sturdier than you would think it would be.” She could hear him making a bunch of noise and turned around to see him piling up some trash.
“What are you doing?” Making a small fire for light.”
“I have a little energy left so I should be able to manage it.”
“What are you…” He held his hand over the pile and she swore she saw a momentary flicker as if he was flicking a lighter.
He sighed. “Come on.” He snapped at the spark took hold. He sat back as the dim light filled the gloom and she moved away from the wood to get a closer look.
“It’s a gift, not much of one, that’s pretty much all I can do with it even when I’m completely energized.” His eyes slid to her leg. “That looks bad.”
“It looks bad.” She could see it better now.
“It’s infected. I would find a way to drain it for you, but I’m afraid with all this…” he gestured at their prison, “it would only make it worse.”
“We have to get out of here, do you think you could…”
“Burn the door down?” He shook his head. “It wouldn’t take. I’m so drained of everything.” His eyes met hers and she could see how terrified he really was. Like a cornered animal.
“What’s your name?”
“Shoshanna” She moved a little closer to the small fire he had conjured up. It wouldn’t be impressive under any other circumstances but it brought her enough comfort to calm herself and think a little more clearly. In this type of situation that was priceless so she thanked him. “it was for me too. You’re right, I’m selfish and afraid, I’m not worth all that much right now I guess…I hate I’ll never get to apologize to my wife for failing her…” guilt tore at her heart now that she was a bit more in a normal state of mind. “what I said was cruel…I’m sorry” he shrugged “I deserved it”
“You told me he killed your wife then I basically said she was better off dead than with a coward…thats fucked up”
“we are in an incredibly fucked up situation, truly, we need to think about getting out. We both have family, family that is worried sick. I need to find the fire within me again, for them. I am deciding now I’m not going to be so selfish any more, I’m going to fight for those that love me”
With this new found information Shoshanna felt hope once more fill her heart. She had heard of people with these abilities but she thought it was all Hollywood, not real life. She caught herself staring in awe at the man next to her. Hurt and guild filled her for her words and she knew she could never take them back. She leaned in closer to the small fire, closing her eyes. She knew it was only a matter of time before the man, if it was even a man, came back.
When she opened her eyes it was morning. She could only tell because of the light drifting in from the small cracks in the wood. How had she fallen asleep? She looked around her and saw Cason staring.
“I was afraid you weren’t going to wake up, I thought I was finally alone in this.”
“It’s ok, I think. I feel weak but I’m ok. I won’t be for long though if I don’t figure something out. Are you sure you can’t burn some of this wood, even unsettle the structure?”
“And what happens if it catches fire and we burn to death or choke on the smoke? I guess it depends on how you want to die, by him or by fire. I don’t think I’m willing to take that chance.”
“Well we have to try something! We cannot just sit here like cattle, waiting to be slaughtered.”
She looked at Cason, pleading him to have the courage, the motivation to try something, anything. The next thing she knew he was walking towards her with something in his hands.
“The fire was just enough to soften the wood so that I could shape it. It’s not much but at least it’s some kind of defense. I’d rather die fighting.”
“Can we use this to try and chip at the wood?”
“I’m not sure, it may be too soft to have an effect, we have a limited supply and I only have so much energy to create another fire.”
Before they could speak any further they heard the heavy fall of footsteps, stumbling to the door. He was back.
“What do we do?” Shoshanna asked.
“I can’t do much until I have more energy. We have to bide out time. If we go at this too early, we’ll die before we can even set foot out this room. So just stay calm, be patient, and don’t be afraid.”
“That’s easy for you to say.”
“No it’s not, but it’s the only way we’re going to stay alive.”
The door to their room opened and both of them inhaled the much fresher air that came rushing in. Their kidnappers eyes moved between them and he moved closer, dropping a plate on the ground. The food looked old and stale. “What do you want with us?” Shoshanna managed to asked, her voice shaking. He just stared at her then reached down and grabbed a handful of her hair. She screamed and started fighting until his other hand gripped her throat and squeezed.
“Stop it!”Cason screamed and the man or monster looked at him. “You’re going to kill her. You can’t play with us if you kill us right?” He dropped her on the ground then grabbed her ankle and lifted her leg up, his eyes moving over the would. “Yeah, she’s going to die because of that. Do you want that so early on? If we die, what’s the point?” Shoshanna didn’t understand what Cason was doing and her throat and head hurt too much to ask. “You want us alive, you wouldn’t keep us locked up right?” She could see his other hand pulled back behind him, his feet under him. He was getting ready to strike.
It was amazing to see him so brave now, so ready to fight to get out. He had seemed so broken just the night before. She didn’t know how she had brought him to this point but she was happy for whatever she had said or done to make him willing to fight for his and her life. His eyes shone with this determination that made her confident he could at least get one good blow on their abductor when he found his opportunity. A surge of pain rushed through her head and it was during that time of completely not being able to process that Cason had apparently fond his moment. It was a loud groaning that brought her back to focus and she saw Cason landing another blow, this time right in his eye.
Shoshanna knew she needed to get up so she could run with him so she began forcing her aching body to move. When she stood it caused her so much pain at this point she felt like letting out a piercing scream but she didn’t, the two men were tussling now and she had to help Cason. He could have just let this man do whatever he had been planning but instead, despite how terrified he was he had found bravery for and she wasn’t about to just let him be harmed either.
Cason went for his other eye then ran, hoping he had done enough to get them a start out. Shoshanna followed, tears streaming from the pain. It was probably only adrenaline and stubbornness making her able to run like this at all. This place was so dark, how did their kidnapper even see very well here? “where do you think you’re going?” the voice was shrill and menacing. It sounded like it came from right beside them but the two couldn’t see anything. It also sounded female which stirred up more terror in Shoshanna’s heart. That man wasn’t working alone, there was someone else here.
Despair coursed through Shoshanna deeper than her pain as she struggled to search for the second voice. It was then that two hands grabbed her throat, forcing her to the ground. Shoshanna could barely make out the face but there was something off about it. Half of this face was gone, marred by burnt flesh, healed over time. The one eye stared intently down at her with malice and rage. Shoshonna tried to fight but the pain in her body was flooding her mind. Darkness clouded her vision and she struggled to breath against the hands closing tightly around her neck. Her hands desperately thrashed, searching for something, anything that could set her free. Finally her hands found the bare tip of something and she grabbed it, not even knowing if it would make a difference. She slammed the tip into her assailant’s face as hard as she could, with every ounce of strength that was left in her body. Screams filled her ears as the hands around her throat loosened. She kicked violently, shaking with all of her might to free herself from this second horror. She barely had time to look up when she saw Cason slamming down next to her, knocking her free. She didn’t have time to think, she was in too much pain to think, all she knew was to run. Cason grabbed her hand begging her to move. She ran as fast as she could, she could barely see in front of her but she kept going, trusting in Cason to lead them. This was their only chance, she had no idea if they were being followed or if they were going to live to see another day. Images flashed in her mind of her family, she could almost feel a summer breeze against her face as her mind started to wander. She felt herself fading and fast. She had to keep going! She couldn’t give up, not when they were so close to freedom. So close to life. She couldn’t give up on Cason when he fought so hard for them. She. must. go. on.
Cason summoned a small amount of fire to light their way. He hadn’t wanted to use any energy he didn’t have to but they couldn’t see and he could tell, especially after that woman jumped out and hurt her worse that Shoshanna wasn’t going to make it very long. With how bad her leg looked it was astounding to him she was doing this well. They found a door and he felt joy rush through him until he tried to pull it open and it wouldn’t budge. He cried out in rage as adrenaline pumped harder through his veins. A stupid door wasn’t going to stop them, it couldn’t, not when he had already severely hurt two of their assailants. They might kill him now if they couldn’t get out and even though he barely knew this woman he couldn’t bare the thought of her having to suffer like this alone.
This was unbearable enough as it was but to be alone with nobody to stir hope in you, that was far worse. He took the risk of setting the door in flames. It was a huge gamble, especially considering this might not be a door to the outside but he wasn’t willing to be caught again. They would die or they would get out and he supposed either was better than being thrown back in that room. Shoshanna stumbled a bit but kept her footing. The world was just spinning so wildly, making it near impossible to keep forcing herself on.
Shrieks were now filling the home and Cason wondered if it was the light, maybe there was a reason this place was pitch dark. His heart twisted as he wondered if choosing to expend what little he had in him from adrenaline to burn the door was a terrible choice. It sounded like there was much more than just two people here. Shoshanna could barely hear it in her daze but she managed to catch his emotional “I’m sorry”
He used all of his might to kick down the compromised door. Light flooded them both with promising air. Cason felt relief wash over him. The shrieks became louder. He didn’t know how much time he had, they had. He had knocked out his two main assailants but knew they could be right behind them by now. Shoshanna dipped and swayed in his arms. They couldn’t fail now, they were so close to safety. He kicked again and again, opening the door just enough so that they could pass. He pulled himself through and then Shoshonna. The light blinded him and it took a few seconds for his eyes to adjust to his surroundings. He was surrounded by woods. He had no idea where they were but at least they had cover. He hobbled towards the tree line, praying for mercy from God, if there even was one. He felt Shoshonna’s weight buckle in his arms and had to try twice as hard not to fall under the pressure. They had come too far to turn back now. He wouldn’t let them be captured, or worse, killed. He continued on, dragging his companion with him. He could tell that the sun was about to set and was thankful for the darkness of the night to conceal them, he was counting on it for he knew that they could not run forever. Honestly, he knew they could not run much farther before Shoshonna collapsed.
He found a large patch of bushes that would have to do for now so they could rest. He drug her through and the pain of her wound being dug into by the branches and leaves made her alert again, sucking air through her teeth “I’m so sorry” he said again, hoping she knew he meant it. His apologies were nowhere near empty, especially right now. He wished he was more physically strong so he could have completely carried her the whole way but he wasn’t so dragging her had been the only way to not leave her behind to remain a victim. Cason laid her down then looked at her wound again, wincing himself. It looked bad, bad enough he hoped a hospital wouldn’t have to remove it later.
He wanted to try and drain it but for now he laid down, feeling silence was the best thing until they were sure they weren’t being followed. He wasn’t sure how long it had been when he finally got up “I’m going to try and drain your wound alright?” he said and she just made a little noise. He sighed, consumed with more worry for her than anything at this point. He just needed this woman to get through this. The weapon he had used was messed up to the point he wasn’t sure he could actually help her with it so he started inspecting branches he could form into sharp point. He was counting on the heat he could produce to cauterize it after.
Cason placed a blunt piece of wood between Shoshonna’s teeth to keep her from screaming and giving their location away, especially since they weren’t very far from their captors in the first place. He began to drain the wound, wincing at her pleas for the end. After a long hour, he felt he had done all he could. The rest of just being away was enough for him to generate enough fire to cauterize the wound. He took one look at Shoshonna’s face and realized that she had passed out during the draining. He took a deep breath and pressed the fire against her leg, she didn’t move. Panic started to rise in his chest at the fear that she couldn’t handle what he had done and she had finally passed. He checked her pulse and relief flooded him when he realized she was just knocked out cold from the pain. He sat back against a tree and breathed. He didn’t have the energy to carry or even drag her any further and he needed to rest himself. The fear of their capture haunted him but eventually sleep won over. When he woke it was brighter than he had seen in a week. The birds around him chirped and the forest was alive, almost as if they hadn’t gone through a horrific trauma this last week. It was incredulous. He looked up to see Shoshonna already up and staring at him.
“Thank you for saving my life” she said. She didn’t know what else to say to him. There were no words to express the thanks that she held in her heart.
“You saved me too, you know” he replied. She knew he was talking about snapping him out of the distorted reality he was previously caught in but the words made her feel a little bit better.
“How is the wound?” he asked.
“It actually feels much better, I feel more alert, more capable. We have to leave this place, we cannot stay here or they will find us. A bush is no more than just that, a bush.”
He took in her words, knowing she was right. He had no idea where they were or which direction to go but he knew they couldn’t give up now. They had to pick a direction and walk no matter what until they found safety. There was no other alternative.
They began and he tried to help her but she said “No, really, I’m so glad you drained the infection. I can do this”
“I just hate it had to hurt so much”
“You did what you had to do to keep me alive long enough to get back to my family.”
“are you close to them?”
“yes, my mom also had anxiety issues and I’m worried about how she’s dealing with this” He smiled “wow, in a situation like this and you’re thinking about how your mother is feeling….you seem like a really good person” she blushed, still surprised he could be so nice to her after their first talk together but she decided to stop kicking herself about it since he was obviously over what she had said. “Have you told many people about your fire abilities?” Shoshanna inquired and he said “No, just those really close to me” They were both so worn they couldn’t talk much more. Plus they knew it was best to be as quiet as possible so they would be harder to find.
As hours passed it felt like these woods went on and on, especially since they were absolutely starving. The two started scanning the ground and trees as hard as they could for anything at all to eat. They knew that was a bit dangerous since neither knew much about what was okay and what wasn’t when you were out in the wild but in their hunger and pain they just didn’t care about anything but getting something in their bellies. They found some mushrooms which they knew would be a particularly big gamble but they took it, happy to have something.
Cason put one in his pocket saying “just in case they make us sick I want to have one to show a doctor”
“I hope we weren’t wrong to eat these but they are really good”
“I think bark would have been delicious at this point. I was considering giving grass a whirl”
With their appetites some what soothed they started back on their path. They were parched but it began to look like rain so they prayed for the natural relief. Shoshonna was doing surprisingly well despite being near death the night before. They walked in silent companionship, focusing on putting one foot in front of the other. The clouds darkened and the air filled with static. The felt it best to find a resting spot under a heavy oak and wait out the rain. They knew they were lucky the weather was warm as the last thing they needed was to go into shock. The rain finally came with it’s mighty hand and the tree’s swayed and dared to break. The wind was so strong that it moved them on their feet and the rain stung in their faces. Cason grabbed Shoshonna and tried to shelter her from the storm as best he could. Shoshonna decided that he really was a good man and her heart grew heavy at the thought of his heartache of loosing his wife so recently. She wished there was something that she could do to ease the pain but she knew there was nothing she could say or do to make the situation any better. She decided the best thing she could do at the moment was appreciate his effort and she huddled even closer into his chest. Sleep was impossible in the storm but the rain finally passed and they decided to try and get some rest, despite their water trodden clothes. They remained huddled together for warmth, even though it wasn’t freezing there was still a bite to the air as they were drenched. Shoshonna drifted off to sleep, feeling like things might be ok for once.
“Here piggy piggy piggies!”
Shoshonna jumped just as Cason went to cover her mouth to keep her from crying out. She could see the lights from a flash light flooding the ground a couple hundred feet from where they lay. They had to leave and fast. Cason urged her to be silent as he helped her to her feet. All of a sudden she noticed a second light, and then a third. They were surrounded. They had no where to go, and what if there were more? Shoshonna knew she could never survive going back to that dungeon of a room and wondered if they would even take them back or just kill them on the spot. Silent tears started to seep from her eyes as her choices began to diminish. Cason grabbed her face and forced her to look into his eyes. He pointed up and it was then that she understood. Their only choice was to climb the tree that had been their refuge for the past few hours. They had to do it now and they had to move fast.
It was all Shoshanna could do to control herself as she sharply intook air. Her wound was hurting again, bad, especially now that she was climbing a tree with it. Cason felt bad for her, he truly did but there was no time to baby her, they had to hurry. If she was ever going to get to a hospital to have her leg properly treated they couldn’t allow themselves to be caught again and thrown back into that disgusting place where she would definitely lose it completely and that was only if they let her live long enough to lose her leg. The lights flashed on them and their hearts sank in their chests. Of course they’d spot them, were the two of them ever going to get a break? They kept climbing, it was all they could do but then the situation got even worse. A bullet whizzed past, they had a gun.
Shoshonna let out a cry as another bullet passed by her immobilized body. What were they going to do?
“Your fire Cason, it’s our only chance!” she cried.
“There’s no way I have enough energy to blast all of them,, there’s too many, it wouldn’t be enough. I’m sorry Shoshonna, there’s nothing we can do. I failed you, I’m so sorry.” Cason hung his head low with defeat. Slowly the intruders started to gather around cat calling the two victims.
“Look, Cason! They are coming together! Can you take them if they are grouped? We would have to wait until just the right moment but it just might work. If anything it would create a diversion.”
Shoshonna refused to give up the hope that she had. Why would God give someone powers if they couldn’t save their life? If there even was a God. Cason studies their oppressors closely. There were indeed beginning to gather together, sure of their victory, but unknowing of his abilities. He closed his eyes and began to concentrate on gathering his energy. Another bullet whizzed by. There were purposely missing them, no doubt just trying to scare them.
“Shoshonna, they aren’t going to kill us yet ,they are too into the chase. We need to climb down so that when I attack we can run. If we attack before we get down we will have to jump and I don’t think your leg can take it.”
Shoshonna nodded in understanding. Cason began to descend slowly with Shoshonna following closely.
“It’s alright, we are coming down, you win.” he spoke slowly and tried to make it sound believable. His voice was shaking with anticipation so he felt he pulled it off. The assailants were laughing in their victory and unaware of what was about to happen. Once both feet were on the ground and Shoshonna was behind him he gathered his energy into his palms, keeping them closed to hide the fire building within.
He had one shot and he tried to have faith in himself. The biggest hurddle anybody had to face when doing anything was self doubt. He had to believe in himself, he had to pull out that courage Shoshanna had given him if they were going to get away again. His wife passed through his mind too as he built the fire. She had died and while he couldn’t do anything to revive her he could channel that anger and hurt into this flame. He cast it, surprised at how much he was able to summon up but didn’t take the time to admire it. He grabbed Shoshannas arms and they both ran as fast as they could force their bodies to go. They continued running until their bodies refused to keep pushing then walked until they found a suitable place to rest. “you sleep, this isn’t a good place to hide so we can’t both sleep”
“we keep needing you magic abilities though”
“I don’t have an infected leg, please sleep. I’m not strong enough to carry you”
“Only an hour, we keep taking hour turns alright?”
“If that will make you sleep okay”
“would it be too much to ask to lay my head in your lap?”
“Thats fine with me” She pillowed her head on his leg and was soon gone to the world again.
Cason kept his ears peaked, listening to any sound that could indicate their pursuers. He knew they wouldn’t be far off and that the blast wasn’t strong enough to kill but only to injure. He looked down at the sleeping woman in his lap and wished he could heal her. He knew their only chance at survival was for her to be able to run as fast as she could, which was impossible. He just had to pray that they had followed the wrong trail and they wouldn’t catch up to them. They had already found them once though so he had to image they had decent tracking skills. These monsters, these psychopaths. What was the point in the game? They just wanted to cause suffering and they were succeeding. He wondered if they would escape with their lives or if they were just making the chase better for those assholes. He shook his head and pushed the negative thoughts away. He had to remain positive if they were going to find their way out. Shoshonna’s hour was almost up and he hated to wake her, he contemplated letting her sleep just a little bit longer but decided he better not go against her wishes. He nudged her gently awake as to not startle her.
“We should keep moving, I can rest later” he said.
“Are you sure? What if we need your powers again?” she responded.
“We will need them for sure if we don’t keep moving, come on, we must go. We are already at a disadvantage with your injury.” Cason meant no harm in this simple observation but the words stung Shoshonna just the same.
“Please, don’t let me hold you up. I couldn’t forgive myself if you were caught because I was too slow to get away.” She hung her head down low.
“No! Please, that’s not what I meant. I would never leave you out here to die, I will help you escape and could never imagine abandoning you. We are in this together.”
His words made her feel better and she tried to smile at him, despite the pain in her leg and the trouble clouding her mind. They continued to move in the direction they had chose, praying it takes them to some form of civilization. They felt like they had been turned around completely when they ran last and only hoped they weren’t going in the wrong direction back towards the horrible house. After another hour Cason decided he should rest and Shoshonna took her turn on watch. Everything remained quiet aside from the birds chirping in the tree’s and the crickets in the grass. When he awoke he felt better. It was starting to get dark and he knew they had a better chance of getting away when they couldn’t be seen. They continued their journey onward, at the quickest pace Shoshonna could manage.
A noise caught their ears and Shoshanna gasped, exclaiming hopefully “Is that a jeep! It sounds like a jeep!”
“Maybe, it does sound like a car but it could be them”
“they weren’t chasing us in a car before”
“We dont really know that. They could have parked it anywhere before approaching us like they did”
“true…” he hated to see the hope fall out of her face but he couldn’t think of comforting her right now. They had to be smart, vigilant and ready for anything. Hopefully it was someone else but it very well could be the people after them. This mystery jeep came into view, probably the bluest car either of them had ever seen. They weren’t sure what to do, wave it down or run from it so it had them frozen. The car stopped and a young woman rolled the window down “Hey, there aren’t normally people out here, are you okay?’ She seemed innocent enough and honestly confused to see them.
“we were both kidnapped. We finally got away and I need to get to a hospital as fast as possible. My leg is infected, bad, please give us a ride to the nearest hospital” It seemed like a lot to process for the woman but she ended up saying “Okay, get in”
“really?” Shoshanna asked and the woman said “yeah, hurry”
Shoshonna looked at Cason, relieved. Their horror was finally over and they could breathe knowing that they would live to see tomorrow. Fear seeped out of them as peace washed it away. The woman was friendly but looked concerned. Cason decided to get in the back seat with Shoshonna to comfort her and reassure her that their troubles were over. The mysterious woman peered through the rear view mirror at the two strangers in her back seat.
“How bad is your leg?” she asked, worried.
“Honestly, I didn’t think I would make it. Cason saved my life by draining the wound and cauterizing it. I can tell it’s getting worse again though, we have been through a lot. Please, I need to get to a hospital as soon as possible.”
“What happened to you? You look horrible.”
Cason chipped in. “We were kidnapped, my wife was brutally murdered. I was knocked out and next thing I knew I was in a dark wooden room, damp and desolate. This woman, Shoshonna was there as well, badly injured. We barely made it out alive. They tracked us down after we escaped and we thought it was hopeless but managed to get away. They could be anywhere now, please, you must be careful and take us straight to a hospital.” His concern for Shoshonna muddled the relief in his voice for their savior.
“I am so sorry to hear of your loss. You said you managed to get away, twice. How did you do that with no weapons?”
Shoshonna looked at Cason with worry. Would he tell her about his abilities or would he lie? She didn’t know if it was safe to tell a perfect stranger but then again she was saving their lives.
“To be honest, I can’t remember. Everything was such a blur. We are starved and exhausted, let alone injured. I can barely concentrate on our discussion now.”
Shoshonna didn’t know why but she was relieved that Cason had decided to lie. She felt his secret should be his and his alone. Saving them or not, they didn’t know if they could trust this woman. The answer seemed to placate the woman but they could tell her suspicion had grown.
“Please, rest until we get to where we are going.” she said, and the two felt safe enough to oblige. Within fifteen minutes they were both out sound.
When Cason opened his eyes, it was dark out. The vehicle was stopped and he took a moment to adjust his eyes. They must be at the hospital, but he couldn’t see anything. There were no city lights or hospital noise. There was silence and darkness. The woman who had saved them was missing but Shoshonna slept safely next to him. This seemed to quell his fear a little and he decided to relax. Maybe they had stopped for gas or were getting a hotel and he just wasn’t looking at the right direction. He decided to investigate. He opened the door and set foot outside the jeep.
“Hello?” he called. He could see a building in front of him but there were no lights to guide him. He wondered if it was safe to use his ability to light the way but thought better of it. There was no reply to his call and his unease started to grow. Where was the woman who had saved them and where were they? They had obviously stated the importance of getting Shoshonna to a hospital so why were they not there?
“Sir?” It was the woman.
“Thank God,” Cason thought. “Yes, I’m here! Where are we? We need to get Shoshonna to a hospital quick! The infection has spread and I do not know how much longer she can hold on.”
“I’m sure she will be fine” replied to woman as she stepped into view. She seemed perfectly calm and had a smile on her face that didn’t set well with Cason.
“Where are we?” he asked again.
“Why, we are right were you are supposed to be. You didn’t really think you could escape did you?”